July 2021

Paedophile who had sick pictures of children was allowed to continue work at Scots uni until court hearing

A university worker who downloaded horrific images of child rape was allowed to continue in his job until he appeared in court where he admitted his crimes.

Pablo Souto, 37, downloaded more than 5,000 indecent pictures of children between the ages of six months and 16 years old.

Images included children being raped by adults and men abusing them while performing solo sex acts.

The pervert pleaded guilty when he appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court last week.

Souto worked for Herio-Watt University in Edinburgh and is understood to have been responsible for assisting students in their accommodation.

A Heriot-Watt University spokesperson said Souto was suspended when they learned about allegations against him and that, following a “full risk assessment,” he was allowed to return to work on “modified duties” while awaiting the outcome of the criminal case.

He has been suspended again until he is sentenced next month.

The university’s website says duties might include resolving conflicts between flatmates, supporting students having difficulties settling in, or acting as a point of contact for anyone locked out of their room.

Edinburgh Sheriff Court heard previously that police received intelligence of indecent images being downloaded at Souto’s former home in the city’s Sinclair Place.

Officers attended the property with a search warrant in June 2020.

Prosecutor Rosie Cook said police seized a laptop belonging to Souto which was forensically examined.

The computer was found to have 5,388 indecent images of children stored on the hard drive.

The fiscal said there were 946 Category A images – the most graphic content – along with 1,202 Category B and 3,240 Category C.

Ms Cook said the images featured a range of ages from six-month-old female babies to 16-year-old female teenagers.

Sheriff Daniel Kelly deferred sentence for the preparation of social work reports and placed Souto on the Sex Offenders’ Register for a term still to be determined.

Souto, currently of the city’s Morrison Street, was granted bail and sentence was deferred until August